Revenue rises thanks to strong automotive industry and currency translation effects
- The technology group’s revenue climbs by 7 percent to EUR 719 million
- Automotive industry strong, other sectors weaken slightly
- Investments in R&D top EUR 30 million
- Apprenticeships tailored to mature students in strong demand
Miba AG’s consolidated revenue climbed by 7 percent to EUR 719.1 million in the past fiscal year (February 1, 2015, to January 31, 2016). Investments in property, plant and equipment reached a new all-time high of almost EUR 80 million and those in research & development a record EUR 31.8 million. The number of employees also continued to rise. As of January 31, 2016, Miba had 5,397 members of staff working at 22 sites worldwide.
The past fiscal year showed Miba’s main fields to be running at two different speeds. While the automotive industry performed strongly, as it had done in the previous year, Miba faced weak to downward trends in segments of the capital goods market. “The past fiscal year has proven once again how important our diversified business model is, especially in volatile times, and that flexibility and continuous development are the watchwords,” said CEO F. Peter Mitterbauer.
Global demand for construction machinery, mining equipment and ships fell again in 2015. The truck market turned in a satisfactory performance in the US and Europe, but in China declined sharply, particularly from the second half of the year onwards. The markets for tractors and locomotive applications were on a stable trend, while demand for power electronics components for energy transmission showed a slightly positive trend. Miba is an important partner to all renowned manufacturers in the above market segments with its development and production of engine bearings, sintered components, friction materials, coatings, power electronics components and special machinery.
Revenue up by EUR 50 million thanks to automotive industry and exchange rate
Consolidated revenue climbed by EUR 49.8 million year on year to EUR 719.1 million. Earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) amounted to EUR 82.9 million (2014/2015: EUR 81.9 million). “The earnings performance reflects the challenging market environment,” Mitterbauer explained.
Investments to reinforce technology leadership
Never before in Miba’s almost 90-year history has so much been invested in the future as at present: EUR 79.2 million went into property, plant and equipment and EUR 31.8 million into research & development. The ratio of research expenditure to consolidated revenue was therefore 4.4 percent.
This ensures that Miba’s innovative strength and technology leadership are reinforced and thus lays the foundations for future growth. Development work focuses on issues such as improving energy efficiency and increasing the precision and comfort of its customers’ end products. In addition, Miba devotes detailed attention to development projects related to e-mobility.
At EUR 2 million, investments in training and continuing education also reached a new all-time high in 2015. Alongside the dual vocational training model in Austria and Slovakia, Miba has also started to develop a similar country-specific offering in the US. In total, Miba is currently training 229 apprentices.
Apprenticeships tailored to mature students prove popula
In Austria, training activities also focused on measures to upskill existing employees. Last fall, twelve employees between 24 and 47 years of age (a third of the new apprentice intake) started the two-year metal worker apprenticeship that runs in parallel to their job. “Interest was far higher, which is why we will start a second group,” said Mitterbauer.
Including agency staff, Miba employed a total of 5,397 members of staff at 22 sites worldwide as of January 31, 2016. Within a period of five years, the number of employees has risen by 1,900, almost 400 of whom are in Austria and 650 in Slovakia.
Miba intends to grow organically and through acquisitions
Miba increased its financial stability and independence again last year. This is a basic requirement for organic growth and acquisition ambitions. “In addition to expanding our established lines of business, we also intend to broaden our product portfolio through acquisitions. With our expertise in technologically sophisticated components, we are also able to create added value in other areas around the megatrends mobility and energy efficiency,” Mitterbauer firmly believes.
Flexibility still required
Although Mitterbauer does not yet expect a sustained improvement in the capital goods markets, he confirms Miba’s strategic direction. “We operate in markets driven by the megatrends mobility and energy and therefore expect stable to positive performance in most of our markets over the long term,” explained the CEO. Neither does Mitterbauer see any reason to doubt that the US and China will be the growth drivers of his industry over the medium to long term as they have been in the past. “The dynamic environment we are operating in at present and rapid technological progress demand an even sharper focus on innovation and technology. Only in this way can we offset any sustained market weakness through an appropriate increase in new product launches and thus continue to extend our technology and product leadership,” Mitterbauer concluded.
Details on the financial statements 2015–2016 can be found at www.ots.at/pressemappe/4183/miba-ag.
Press photographs from the annual press conference can be found at www.apa-fotoservice.at/galerie/7727.
Miba’s Annual Report 2015–2016 will be published at http://www.miba.com/en/company/investor-relations/ the end of May.